Residents of the world’s tallest building in Dubai are being punished over unpaid maintenance fees – some of them unjustly. In order to pressure property owners who have defaulted on their annual payments, developers Emaar warned residents that air-conditioning and elevator service would be cut until they receive their money.
Central Istanbul looks like a war zone as shells of burnt out vehicles simmer after a long day of confrontations between riot police and anti-government protestors at Taksim Square yesterday.
Turkey’s Taksim square protest flared up last week when police took drastic measures to clear activists from Gezi Park- slated for destruction to make way for yet another shopping center. But that’s not the only unsustainable project the government is pursuing in the name of economic growth. We list 5 of the major ones.
Campaigners in Lebanon are asking for support to protect an ancient Phoenician coastline which is under threat due to a port project Lebanese environment campaigners are calling on nature lovers far and wide to help them protect an important piece of their natural heritage along the Mediterranean Sea. It seems that a beautiful part of the […]
If you ask him, Ibrahim Ibrahimov will probably tell you that his plan to build an archipelago of artificial islands, scores of apartment buildings, bridges and the world’s newest tallest tower will be good for Azerbaijan, but really the billionaire is on a path that may destroy everything that makes the capital, Baku, so special. The […]
Despite all the criticism the plan received from urban planners, lawyers, activists, academics, and concerned citizens, Istanbul has begun remodeling its central square, a focal point for transportation and protests.
If we all lived like the citizens of the UAE, we would need 5.4 planet earths to sustain us… Sometimes the best way to say something is not with words but images. And there is truly no better wake up call to the UAE than this amazing infographic designed by Tim De Chant. It shows […]
The privately-owned Abdali development company promises that the new 384,000 sqm commercial center in the heart of Jordan’s capital Amman will offer “lush inviting spaces that beckon and call for your attention.” “Notice the elements subtly woven into the new downtown’s [sic] environment,” their web marketing person gushed. “Delight in the blossoming urban forest close […]
‘Z’ is an anonymous cartoonist whose pink flamingo trademark came about due to his efforts to stop development projects which would destroy the bird’s natural habitat By day an architect and by night a bitingly critical cartoonist, ‘Z’ is a force to be reckoned with. His criticism of the previous Tunisian dictator Ben Ali meant […]
A German company has just secured the contract for a mega project in Mecca which will house around 160,000 inhabitants Despite reassurances that Mecca would take a more considered approach to construction, a new mega-scheme for the city has just been given the green light. Following the horrendous Mecca Clocktower and the growing sprawl surrounding […]
Despite having enough solar power to energize the planet for the next 20 centuries, Saudi Arabia has instead reaped the benefits of its oil reserves for decades. This wealth has spurred a spate of massive developments in Mecca, transforming a small desert hamlet into a thriving metropolis. But this may be a curse for Islam’s […]
Doha-based architect Romi Sebastian questions the feasibility of Qatar’s urban planning ahead of the 2022 World Cup Qatar is moving rapidly towards its vision to host the world cup in 2022. Yet if scrutinised, current progress in urban infrastructure and architecture seems to be frail in terms of character and functional approach. Is the idea of […]
If you need another reason to support the Barcelona soccer team, this might help: in order to expand their fan base in the Middle East and Asia, Real Madrid is joining forces with the United Arab Emirates to build a giant soccer resort complete with a stadium, fancy villas, two high rise hotels, and a […]
The Al Hamra Firdous Tower in Kuwait City is the world’s 13th largest Kuwait is now competing with Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to build the biggest, baddest skyscrapers. The recently completed Al Hamra Firdous Tower also called the “Enshrouded Figure” is 412 meters tall and is ranked by the Council on Tall […]
Brian argues that skyscrapers are not only “un-green,” but they could be a precursor to economic turmoil. The Empire State Building was completed in 1931, the same year E.Y. “Yip” Harburg wrote these lyrics: “Once I built a tower up to the sun, brick and rivet and lime. Once I built a tower, now its […]
When it is complete, the JW Marriott Marquis Dubai Hotel will be the world’s tallest. Never mind that scientists have discovered giant plumes of methane that could speed up global-warming, which could contribute to even higher temperatures in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and other countries. Pay no attention to the fact that hundreds of partially unoccupied […]
Studio Schiattarella and Tecturae’s winning proposal for the Celebration Hall of Riyadh distorts true Bedouin values. It is common in Middle Eastern design to evoke images of a more sustainable past in order to justify a less sustainable present, and nowhere is this more true than in Saudi Arabia. The winning proposal for the Celebration […]
It’s official: Zaha Hadid is going to design the new Central Bank of Iraq’s Headquarters; Tafline argues that it should be green. Zaha Hadid is widely celebrated for her incredible, untethered design, but less so for her environmental sensibilities. So when we learned that the deal to design a major project for her home country, […]
For Mohammad Sabir Khedri, compiling the pages of this enormous and intricately detaied holy book was a 5 year labor of love. A master calligrapher has lovingly unveiled the world’s largest Quran in Kabul, Afghanistan, according to a Reuters report released last week. The giant holy book measures 7.5 by 5.10 feet, weighs over 1,000 pounds, […]
A report last week showed that development projects like The World manmade islands above are destroying the Gulf’s fragile marine ecosystem. One major culprit, Nakheel, aims to restore their own damage with 500 artificial reefs. Last week the United Nations University Institute for Water, Environment and Health in Toronto released the first official report linking […]
The revolution in Egypt has left a power vacuum that is allowing unchecked development to take over a once thriving, quiet dive spot. Apart from the Egyptian revolution itself, a powerful culmination of civil disobedience that roused thousands of somnambulant citizens from decades of political apathy, it’s still hard to see in what way this […]
Jordan’s Star Trek theme park will be a sprawling 74 hectare development, but it does have an eco upside. Since its various eco-parks and green housing projects haven’t done enough to stimulate an appreciation of sustainable development in Jordan’s residents, perhaps the Kingdom’s crazy new Star Trek themed park can fill in the gaps. Once […]
Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill make their own announcement: they’re designing the Kingdom Tower, but it won’t be a mile high. Every blogger who gives a toot about sustainable building fell over themselves earlier this year to mock Saudi’s mile high tower. We all bought the story without really thinking about what such a tall […]
The Managing Director of dwp design in the United Arab Emirates discusses Abu Dhabi’s future at the opening day of Interiors UAE. Abu Dhabi is in a fantastic position to design for the people, according to a leading design professional. Brian Hillesdon, the Managing Director of dwp design in the UAE discussed Dubai’s uni-fuctional building […]
A greenie examines her soul at the foot of hundreds of Dubai towers. Dubai is nothing at all like Las Vegas. Though both are unlikely cities in waterless environs and full of people eager to divest visitors of both their souls and their money, that is where their likeness ends. As a tour leader for […]